Starting jazz guitar improvisation

Jimbro66Jimbro66 Frets: 1417
For anyone who’d like to get into jazz guitar playing or who simply wants to approach improvisation in in a different way this video is a very clear explanation of the fundamentals. It’s hosted by the excellent tutor Justin Guitar who this time gets his own lesson from the superb jazz guitarist Mike Outram. I learned a lot from Mike’s Electric Campfire web site back in the naughties. His Campfire tuition ranges from basics, as in this video, to the highly advanced (well beyond my limitations :D ).

It’s a longish video but worth setting aside the time as it starts with basic melody and builds on that. It’s an interesting insight into the jazzer’s mind set.

https://youtu.be/QlpdfLxSHnE
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  • Mike is a badass! Saw him a few years ago and was blown away 
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  • octatonicoctatonic Frets: 23169
    Mike's great.

    "And what would humans be without love?"
    “RARE, said Death.”

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  • KRSKRS Frets: 7
    I've never heard of Mike and I think he's great! I really like the idea of say just using D, G and B strings and then working out all the different triad inversions of a tune and then playing that. Instant jazz!
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  • Jimbro66Jimbro66 Frets: 1417
    octatonic said:
    Mike's great.
    Mike is a badass! Saw him a few years ago and was blown away 
    Yep, a phenomenal player and guitar teacher. I’ve seen him perform with various jazz combos over the past fifteen years or so including one night about ten years ago when he came down to the St Ives Jazz Club in Cornwall with the Tony Woods Project. It was a bitterly cold winter’s night so the audience amounted to me and no more than ten others but boy did the band put on a show!

    For those of you beyond the basics here’s a slightly more advanced lesson from Mike, again with Justin:

    https://youtu.be/w-KoKYsu3TI

    Some of you might remember Mike’s tuitional articles in the back of Guitarist mag maybe twenty years ago?
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  • KRSKRS Frets: 7
    As I'm enjoying a wonderfully acute period of insomnia, I was running through the approach from the first video over the changes for 'My favourite Things', a particularly 'jazzy' version with some nice substitutes. Wow, this works so well. Apparently I thought I knew this but in fact I've actually never used the 'play the triad' approach when studying changes. 
    Thanks @Jimbro66, this is totally legit learning. 
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  • Matt_McGMatt_McG Frets: 197
    I’ve had an in person lesson with Mike. Highly recommended. I keep meaning to book more but childcare and work gets in the way.
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  • Jimbro66Jimbro66 Frets: 1417
    I think that first video is possibly the most informative I've seen in explaining the fundamental jazz guitarist's chord-based approach to soloing as apposed to the key-based approach of other guitar genres. It's the perfect introduction for a beginner.

    @KRS there's a lot to be said for insomnia - as long as you remember it all the following morning :D 

    @Matt_McG a personal lesson with Mike must have been quite an experience. I seem to remember getting an email from him saying he offers Skype lessons? I certainly learned a lot from Electric Campfire membership ten or more years ago but concluded that I'd left it too late in life to reach jazz guitar performer grade (the standard is so high). I should have taken it seriously back in my teens when my dad and older brother fed me albums by Jimmy Raney, Tal Farlow, Barney Kessell, etc but at that time it was Rockabilly that lit my fuse :)
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  • DB1DB1 Frets: 1256
    Jimbro66 said:
    octatonic said:
    Mike's great.
    Mike is a badass! Saw him a few years ago and was blown away 
    Yep, a phenomenal player and guitar teacher. I’ve seen him perform with various jazz combos over the past fifteen years or so including one night about ten years ago when he came down to the St Ives Jazz Club in Cornwall with the Tony Woods Project. It was a bitterly cold winter’s night so the audience amounted to me and no more than ten others but boy did the band put on a show!

    For those of you beyond the basics here’s a slightly more advanced lesson from Mike, again with Justin:

    https://youtu.be/w-KoKYsu3TI

    Some of you might remember Mike’s tuitional articles in the back of Guitarist mag maybe twenty years ago?
    My goodness, what a great solo to open the video. Thanks for posting it.
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  • pickergpickerg Frets: 17
    Just made a cuppa and watched this, @Jimbro66 thanks for sharing and the introduction to Mike. It’s great, just what I need as a little project to get into. When he goes up the neck following the triads playing them as arpeggios it’s a proper lightbulb moment!
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  • jpfampsjpfamps Frets: 1806
    Jimbro66 said:
    I think that first video is possibly the most informative I've seen in explaining the fundamental jazz guitarist's chord-based approach to soloing as apposed to the key-based approach of other guitar genres. It's the perfect introduction for a beginner.

    @KRS there's a lot to be said for insomnia - as long as you remember it all the following morning :D 

    @Matt_McG a personal lesson with Mike must have been quite an experience. I seem to remember getting an email from him saying he offers Skype lessons? I certainly learned a lot from Electric Campfire membership ten or more years ago but concluded that I'd left it too late in life to reach jazz guitar performer grade (the standard is so high). I should have taken it seriously back in my teens when my dad and older brother fed me albums by Jimmy Raney, Tal Farlow, Barney Kessell, etc but at that time it was Rockabilly that lit my fuse :)
    A lot of the early jazz guitar, especially people like Charlie Christian, is very much based around the chord tones.

    The lap steel really highlights this approach as in the "standard" 6th tunings you have major and minor triads.

    In fact someone I know uses lap steel in a course he runs called SAD Harmony (singers and drummers harmony) at his institution.


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